IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Affirmative Action, Incentives and the Black-White Test Score Gap


  • Eric Furstenberg

    (Department of Economics, College of William and Mary)


This paper develops a theoretical model of college admissions to study the effects of affirmative action policies on the high school achievement of college bound students. The innovation is to include endogenous human capital decisions in the model. When colleges switch admissions policies, they implicitly alter the likelihood of acceptance earned by a given human capital investment. Thus, human capital investments are sensitive to changes in admissions policies. The main results are that banning affirmative action increases the black-white test score gap and decreases college enrollment and social welfare of the minority group.

Suggested Citation

  • Eric Furstenberg, 2004. "Affirmative Action, Incentives and the Black-White Test Score Gap," Working Papers 03, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.
  • Handle: RePEc:cwm:wpaper:3

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Haim Levy, 1992. "Stochastic Dominance and Expected Utility: Survey and Analysis," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 38(4), pages 555-593, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Guilherme Strifezzi Leal & Ã lvaro Choi, 2021. "Racial quotas in higher education and pre-college academic performance: Evidence from Brazil," UB Economics Working Papers 2021/411, Universitat de Barcelona, Facultat d'Economia i Empresa, UB School of Economics.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Caporin, Massimiliano & Costola, Michele & Jannin, Gregory & Maillet, Bertrand, 2018. "“On the (Ab)use of Omega?”," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 11-33.
    2. Colson, Gérard, 1993. "Prenons-nous assez de risque dans les théories du risque?," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 69(1), pages 111-141, mars.
    3. Wojtek Michalowski & Włodzimierz Ogryczak, 2001. "Extending the MAD portfolio optimization model to incorporate downside risk aversion," Naval Research Logistics (NRL), John Wiley & Sons, vol. 48(3), pages 185-200, April.
    4. Ogryczak, Wlodzimierz & Ruszczynski, Andrzej, 1999. "From stochastic dominance to mean-risk models: Semideviations as risk measures," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 116(1), pages 33-50, July.
    5. Vannoorenberghe, G. & Janeba, E., 2016. "Trade and the political economy of redistribution," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 233-244.
    6. Grazyna Trzpiot, 2000. "Preference Relations In Ranking Multivalued Alternatives Using Stochastic Dominance: Case Of The Warsaw Stock Exchange," Computing in Economics and Finance 2000 98, Society for Computational Economics.
    7. Markus Haas, 2007. "Do investors dislike kurtosis?," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 7(2), pages 1-9.
    8. Post, G.T., 2003. "Asset prices and omitted moments; A stochastic dominance analysis of market efficiency," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2003-017-F&A, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
    9. Seyoung Park & Eun Ryung Lee & Sungchul Lee & Geonwoo Kim, 2019. "Dantzig Type Optimization Method with Applications to Portfolio Selection," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 11(11), pages 1-32, June.
    10. Kuan Xu & Gordon Fisher, 2006. "Myopic loss aversion and margin of safety: the risk of value investing," Quantitative Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 6(6), pages 481-494.
    11. Topaloglou, Nikolas & Tsionas, Mike G., 2020. "Stochastic dominance tests," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 112(C).
    12. Phillips Peter J. & Pohl Gabriela, 2018. "The Deferral of Attacks: SP/A Theory as a Model of Terrorist Choice when Losses Are Inevitable," Open Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 1(1), pages 71-85, February.
    13. Hardaker, J. Brian & Lien, Gudbrand D., 2003. "Stochastic Efficiency Analysis With Risk Aversion Bounds: A Simplified Approach," Working Papers 12954, University of New England, School of Economics.
    14. Larry Y. Tzeng & Rachel J. Huang & Pai-Ta Shih, 2013. "Revisiting Almost Second-Degree Stochastic Dominance," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 59(5), pages 1250-1254, May.
    15. Moshe Levy & Haim Levy, 2013. "Prospect Theory: Much Ado About Nothing?," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Leonard C MacLean & William T Ziemba (ed.), HANDBOOK OF THE FUNDAMENTALS OF FINANCIAL DECISION MAKING Part I, chapter 7, pages 129-144, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    16. Russell Davidson & Jean-Yves Duclos, 2013. "Testing for Restricted Stochastic Dominance," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(1), pages 84-125, January.
    17. Sonin Konstantin, 2004. "Private interest in public tenders: no revenue, no efficiency and no social benefits," EERC Working Paper Series 00-111e, EERC Research Network, Russia and CIS.
    18. Cristiano Arbex Valle & Diana Roman & Gautam Mitra, 2017. "Novel approaches for portfolio construction using second order stochastic dominance," Computational Management Science, Springer, vol. 14(2), pages 257-280, April.
    19. Bouyssou, Denis & Marchant, Thierry, 2011. "Bibliometric rankings of journals based on Impact Factors: An axiomatic approach," Journal of Informetrics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 75-86.
    20. Michael J. Seiler & David M. Harrison & Pim Van Vliet & Kit Ching Yeung, 2005. "Return Characteristics of State‐Owned and Non‐State‐Owned Chinese A Shares," The Financial Review, Eastern Finance Association, vol. 40(4), pages 533-548, November.

    More about this item


    Affirmative Action; Discrimination; Public Policy; Education; Asymmetric Information;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cwm:wpaper:3. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Daifeng He The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Daifeng He to update the entry or send us the correct address or Alfredo Pereira (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.